Django/PostgreSQL implementation of the Meteor server.
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README.rst

Django DDP

Warning! This fork is unmaintained. Please use github.com/jazzband/django-ddp.

Django DDP is a Django/PostgreSQL implementation of the Meteor DDP server, allowing Meteor to subscribe to changes on Django models. Released under the MIT license.

Requirements

You must be using PostgreSQL with psycopg2 in your Django project for django-ddp to work. There is no requirement on any asynchronous framework such as Redis or crossbar.io as they are simply not needed given the asynchronous support provided by PostgreSQL with psycopg2.

Since the test suite includes an example Meteor project, running that requires that Meteor is installed (and meteor is in your PATH).

Installation

Install the latest release from pypi (recommended):

pip install django-ddp

Clone and use development version direct from GitHub to test pre-release code (no GitHub account required):

pip install -e git+https://github.com/commoncode/django-ddp@develop#egg=django-ddp

Overview and getting started

  1. Django DDP registers handlers for Django signals on all model save/update operations.
    • Add 'dddp' to INSTALLED_APPS in your project settings file.
  2. Each Django application (ie: your code) registers Collections and Publications via ddp sub-modules for all INSTALLED_APPS.
    • Register collections and publications in a file named dddp.py inside your application module.
  3. Clients subscribe to publications, entries are written into the dddp.Subscription and dddp.SubscriptionCollection model tables and the get_queries method of publications are called to retrieve the Django ORM queries that contain the objects that will be sent to the client.
    • Run manage.py migrate to update your database so it has the necessary tables needed for tracking client subscriptions.
  4. When models are saved, the Django DDP signal handlers send change messages to clients subscribed to relevant publications.
    • Use the model save() and delete() methods as appropriate in your application code so that appropriate signals are raised and change messages are sent.
  5. Gevent is used to run WebSocket connections concurrently along with any Django views defined in your project (via your project urls.py).
    • Run your application using the dddp command which sets up the gevent mainloop and serves your Django project views. This command takes care of routing WebSocket connections according to the URLs that Meteor uses, do not add URLs for WebSocket views to your project urls.py.

Scalability

All database queries to support DDP events are done once by the server instance that has made changes via the Django ORM. Django DDP multiplexes messages for active subscriptions, broadcasting an aggregated change message on channels specific to each Django model that has been published.

Peer servers subscribe to aggregate broadcast events which are de-multiplexed and dispatched to individual client connections. No additional database queries are required for de-multiplexing or dispatch by peer servers.

Limitations

  • No support for the SockJS XHR fallback protocol to support browsers that don't have WebSockets (see http://caniuse.com/websockets for supported browsers). It is noteworthy that the only current browser listed that doesn't support WebSockets is Opera Mini, which doesn't support pages that use EcmaScript (JavaScript) for interactivity anyway. Offering SockJS XHR fallback wouldn't help to substantially increase browser support: if Opera Mini is excluded then all current browser versions including IE, Edge, Firefox, Chrome, Safari, Opera, iOS Safari, Android Browser Android and Chrome for Android are supported. Having said all that, pull requests are welcome.
  • Changes must be made via the Django ORM as django-ddp uses Django signals to receive model save/update signals. There are no technical reasons why database triggers couldn't be used - pull requests are welcome.

Example usage

Add 'dddp' to your settings.INSTALLED_APPS:

# settings.py
...
INSTALLED_APPS = list(INSTALLED_APPS) + ['dddp']

If you'd like support for the Meteor Accounts package (ie: login/logout with django.contrib.auth) consult the section on authentication below and use the following line instead:

# settings.py
...
INSTALLED_APPS = list(INSTALLED_APPS) + ['dddp', 'dddp.accounts']

Add ddp.py to your Django application:

# bookstore/ddp.py

from dddp.api import API, Collection, Publication
from bookstore import models

class Book(Collection):
    model = models.Book


class Author(Collection):
    model = models.Author


class AllBooks(Publication):
    queries = [
        models.Author.objects.all(),
        models.Book.objects.all(),
    ]


class BooksByAuthorEmail(Publication):
    def get_queries(self, author_email):
        return [
            models.Author.objects.filter(
                email=author_email,
            ),
            models.Book.objects.filter(
                author__email=author_email,
            ),
        ]


API.register(
    [Book, Author, AllBooks, BooksByAuthorEmail]
)

Start the Django DDP service:

DJANGO_SETTINGS_MODULE=myproject.settings dddp

Using django-ddp as a secondary DDP connection (RAPID DEVELOPMENT)

Running in this manner allows rapid development through use of the hot code push features provided by Meteor.

Connect your Meteor application to the Django DDP service:

// bookstore.js
if (Meteor.isClient) {
    // Connect to Django DDP service
    Django = DDP.connect('http://'+window.location.hostname+':8000/');
    // Create local collections for Django models received via DDP
    Authors = new Mongo.Collection("bookstore.author", {connection: Django});
    Books = new Mongo.Collection("bookstore.book", {connection: Django});
    // Subscribe to all books by Janet Evanovich
    Django.subscribe('BooksByAuthorEmail', 'janet@evanovich.com');
}

Start Meteor (from within your meteor application directory):

meteor

Using django-ddp as the primary DDP connection (RECOMMENDED)

If you'd prefer to not have two DDP connections (one to Meteor and one to django-ddp) you can set the DDP_DEFAULT_CONNECTION_URL environment variable to use the specified URL as the primary DDP connection in Meteor. When doing this, you won't need to use DDP.connect(...) or specify {connection: Django} on your collections. Running with django-ddp as the primary connection is recommended, and indeed required if you wish to use dddp.accounts to provide authentication using django.contrib.auth to your meteor app.

DDP_DEFAULT_CONNECTION_URL=http://localhost:8000/ meteor

Serving your Meteor applications from django-ddp

First, you will need to build your meteor app into a directory (examples below assume target directory named myapp):

meteor build ../myapp

Then, add a MeteorView to your urls.py:

from dddp.views import MeteorView

urlpatterns = patterns(
    url('^(?P<path>/.*)$', MeteorView.as_view(
        json_path=os.path.join(
            settings.PROJ_ROOT, 'myapp', 'bundle', 'star.json',
        ),
    ),
)

Adding API endpoints (server method definitions)

API endpoints can be added by calling register method of the dddp.api.API object from the ddp.py module of your Django app, on a subclass of dddp.api.APIMixin - both dddp.api.Collection and dddp.api.Publication are suitable, or you may define your own subclass of dddp.api.APIMixin. A good example of this can be seen in dddp/accounts/ddp.py in the source of django-ddp.

Authentication

Authentication is provided using the standard meteor accounts system, along with the accounts-secure package which turns off Meteor's password hashing in favour of using TLS (HTTPS + WebSockets). This ensures strong protection for all data over the wire. Correctly using TLS/SSL also protects your site against man-in-the-middle and replay attacks - Meteor is vulnerable to both of these without using encryption.

Add dddp.accounts to your settings.INSTALLED_APPS as described in the example usage section above, then add tysonclugg:accounts-secure to your Meteor application (from within your meteor application directory):

meteor add tysonclugg:accounts-secure

Then follow the normal procedure to add login/logout views to your Meteor application.

Contributors

Tyson Clugg
  • Author, conceptual design.
Yan Le
  • Validate and bug fix dddp.accounts submodule.
MEERQAT
  • Project sponsor - many thanks for allowing this to be released under an open source license!
David Burles
  • Expert guidance on how DDP works in Meteor.
Brenton Cleeland
  • Great conversations around how collections and publications can limit visibility of published documents to specific users.
Muhammed Thanish

This project is forever grateful for the love, support and respect given by the awesome team at Common Code.